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Plot to Kill Singlaub Bared in Philippines

February 10, 1988|Associated Press

MANILA — The military today said it had uncovered a plot by Communist guerrillas to assassinate retired U.S. Maj. Gen. John K. Singlaub.

Col. Oscar Florendo, chief military spokesman, said the military uncovered the assassination plot after decoding computer disks seized during the capture last week of 20 leaders of the outlawed Communist Party of the Philippines.

Florendo told reporters that in addition to Singlaub, assassination targets included two prominent Filipinos: Chief of Staff Gen. Renato de Villa and Brig. Gen. Honesto Isleta, the former military spokesman.

Florendo said the rebels planned to assign two assassination squads with six members each to the plan. The killings were to be carried out over one year, he added, but he did not say when the timetable was to begin.

The rebel killers were to be provided with .45-caliber and .38-caliber pistols, grenades and dynamite, Florendo said.

Vigilante Groups

Singlaub spent several months in the Philippines last year and has been accused by the rebels of masterminding the formation of civilian anti-communist vigilante groups. He is currently in the United States.

He has denied setting up vigilante groups or contributing to anti-rebel efforts during his stay. He said he was working with the permission of the Philippine government to recover billions of dollars in treasure buried by the fleeing Japanese military at the end of World War II but abandoned the effort because of the accusations linking him to the vigilante groups.

Singlaub heads the U.S. Council For World Freedom, a Phoenix-based private group that raises funds for the Contra rebels fighting to overthrow the leftist Sandinista government in Nicaragua.

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